A total of 767 students from the University of Mines and Technology (UMaT), Tarkwa in the Western Region on Saturday graduated with various degrees, diplomas and certificates at its 15th congregation.
Out of the figure, 80 graduands received postgraduate degrees, with 13 been awarded Doctor of Philosophy degrees, 582 graduands were awarded first degree in their respective engineering programmes, seven had diplomas and 98 were awarded certificates.
Mr Abdul-Rahman Ishaak from the Department of Mining Engineering, received the Vice Chancellor’s overall best graduating student award, sponsored by the UMaT Alumni Association.
He took home laptop computer, cash prize of GH¢2,000.00 and a certificate.
For this year, the best workers awards instituted by the University to motivate all staff to put up their best and work in the interest of the University, went to Mr Hermas Abaah Akolgo and Mr Roland Blisette, for the Senior and Junior Staff Categories. Each had a cash prize of GH¢2,500 and citation.
Professor Richard Kwasi Amankwah, Vice Chancellor of the UMaT, in his address announced that the Minerals Engineering Department published 53 papers and won the award for the Department with the Highest Number of Publications.
On achievements, he said “UMaT won the 2023 Regional Petrobowl Contest. In addition, the UMaT Drillbotics Team placed first in the Virtual Directional Drilling Rig Simulator Design option in the 2022/2023 International Drillbotics Competition.
The UMaT Internal Audit Team was adjudged the Best Internal Audit Unit, Tertiary Category for the 2022/2023 auditing year at the Annual Internal Audit Conference. Congratulations to all the teams.”
Prof Amankwah explained that the University has taken major steps to maintain its position among forward looking Universities by deepening research and advancing their interactions with Government, industry and the community within the triple helix engagements and partnerships.
“The University continues to support responsible mining and for the year under consideration, they observed the Sustainable Small-scale Mining Awareness Day on 2nd June by engaging the Akoon Community Mine to create awareness on the need to adopt sustainable and environmentally friendly methods in Artisanal and Small-scale mining,” he stated.
For many years, the Vice Chancellor noted that residents of mining communities have complained that they were not offered employment in the industry and companies on the other hand explained that it was due to the absence of qualified personnel in the communities.
“To promote skills development in mineral-rich communities, the University teamed up with the Bibiani Community to operationalize the Bibiani Community School to build the capacity and prepare community members to take up professional jobs in the mining and minerals industry. More of such community schools will be established in other mineral-rich communities,” Prof. Amankwah said.
In addition, he said the University organized its Annual Innovation and Career Fair to promote innovation among their students. Junior and Senior High Schools in the Municipality were given access to the campus to visit their laboratories to interact with lecturers.
According to him, “during this year’s event, one student group, Team Tech Works, who produced an electric-powered wheelchair was adjudged the winners. As part of the University’s Corporate Social Responsibility, UMaT would develop and donate two of the motorized wheelchairs to the Tarkwa Municipal Hospital in due course.”
“UMaT received massive support from many institutions for which we are grateful. Many thanks go to the Government for the support through the Minerals Development Fund (MDF) to complete the legacy projects. The Minerals Income Investment Fund (MIIF) has allocated USD 2.0 million to support the University to establish the Jewellery Centre.
The MIIF has also confirmed its support for the establishment of the Ghana Mining Museum at UMaT” he emphasized.
Prof. Amankwah further said “The Ghana Chamber of Mines provided financial support through its Tertiary Education Fund (GCM-TEF). For the initial five years of support, the Chamber gave scholarships to brilliant but needy students, research grants for lecturers and postgraduate students, and built a Faculty Block.
Looking at the level of transformation witnessed in UMaT during the first phase of the implementation of the fund, the Chamber has signed off funds for the second phase to UMaT for the next five years. UMaT is indeed thankful to the Chamber.”
He Indicated that “AngloGold Ashanti Iduapriem Limited also established a disability friendly ICT Laboratory in UMaT called the “AngloGold Ashanti Inclusive Tech Lab”. Thanks for helping UMaT to improve upon the inclusivity.
Also, the University has an engagement with Atlantic Lithium to conduct feasibility studies on the lithium-value chain and assess the viability of how the by-product, feldspar, can be applied in other industries, especially the ceramics industry.”
“We are also grateful to Rocksure International Limited, AngloGold Ashanti Obuasi Limited, Newmont Goldcorp Ghana, Gold Fields Ghana Limited, US Department of State and US Embassy Ghana for sponsoring many programmes in the University.
To all the companies that supported activities in the University, we say many thanks.
To the mining and allied companies, our state-of-the-art environmental laboratory is available and while thanking you, I would urge you to extend the support by bringing your samples for analysis in the UMaT Environmental Monitoring Laboratory,” the Vice Chancellor added.
The former President, His Excellency John Agyekum Kufour, Chancellor of the UMaT, in a speech read on his behalf implored the graduates to uphold the highest ethical standards in all their dealings and provide professional services to the national and international communities.
“I trust that our graduands are able to add to knowledge and also solve some of the problems of our country that will put communities and organizations to their next level of development,” he said.